The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service indicated underwater search efforts for missing Cayman Brac man Linvol Smith were winding down Monday evening.
Friends believe that on Friday Mr. Smith went snorkeling or swimming, rather than diving as reported previously by RCIPS. His clothing was found near Scotts Dock.
He did not appear to work Saturday and was then reported missing.
Despite daily search efforts by land and water, Mr. Smith could not be found by rescue workers.
“We believe that we have searched as completely as possible in the location, especially given current weather conditions,” said Acting Superintendent Brad Ebanks, head of Specialist Support Operations.
“Our officers report that the undertow is carrying them to the wall at present. Given these conditions, we must reluctantly admit that further underwater searches are unlikely to be successful and we have concluded these efforts. Our thoughts are with Mr. Smith’s family at this time.”
Police continue to investigate the disappearance and encouraged anyone who may have seen Mr. Smith Friday afternoon to contact the Cayman Brac Police Station at 948-0331.
The RCIPS thanked the Fire Service, the Department of Environment, the Brac Scuba Shack, private boat owners, local businesses and private citizens “for their invaluable assistance this weekend in our efforts to locate Mr. Smith.”
Earlier story at 7:30 p.m. Monday
Police scuba divers were continuing to search the waters around Cayman Brac Monday for 54-year-old Linvol Smith amid diminishing hope that he would be found alive.
Mr. Smith was reported missing Saturday after he did not show up for work. He was last seen around noon Friday when he left home with his dive gear, telling friends he was going to the bay to dive.
His vehicle and some dive clothing were found close to Scott’s Dock in Cayman Brac’s West End, where police believe he entered the water at some point on Friday afternoon.
Volunteers searched the shallow waters around the dock Saturday and the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service’s new dive team was deployed to the Brac and carried out searches on Sunday and Monday.
A police spokeswoman said Monday that the police had deployed all its available resources to search for Mr. Smith.
“At this point we recognize it is very optimistic to believe we are still going to find him alive, however we continue in the hope that we will.”
Police, fire, customs and Department of Environment officers as well as community volunteers have been involved in the search.
Thunderstorms and poor weather have prevented the RCIPS helicopter from deploying to the Brac to assist with searches.
Brad Ebanks, acting superintendent of specialist operations, paid tribute to the breadth of the community response.
“The thoroughness of these searches would not be possible without the private boat owners, divers, snorkelers, dive shop owners and other private citizens who have responded to this emergency with us and our first responder colleagues,” he said.